Tag Archive: Atmel


I’m just posting this since the post about my Arduino + MAX-7456 board still seems to be getting a fair bit of attention. I gathered up the code linked to in my original blog post and have uploaded a .zip with the library files as well as a test sketch that uses it. I haven’t taken a close look at this code in a long time, and I never did get around to fixing it like I wanted to. Since I’ve abandoned the Arduino in favor of the Rabbit for my access system solution it became apparent that this wasn’t something I was going to pursue anymore, but I figured I’d release what I did mash together for what it’s worth. It’s a pretty sloppy implementation as I just wanted to test proof-of-concept code to get it working quickly. It works by passing a massive array to a function (1 element for each character location available w/ the MAX-7456, don’t recall what that is right now). I had originally intended to modify the code so that it could work with the string library, keep track of it’s current position and allow a “MoveToLocation(int x)” type procedure to clean stuff up, so feel free to go ahead and do that and share it with everybody 😀

NOTE: Those of you interested in PAL: Go to my original blog post (link above) and look at the code linked. You will see a crapload of DEFINE blocks that are enclosed in comments. One set of comments contains a set of variables used for PAL, the other for NTSC. IIRC you can simply swap the values for PAL to replace the NTSC values in the library and it should work just fine. I think a few little things change, like # of chars that will fit on the screen, so you might have to play with that a bit, but it should be pretty straightforward.

Cheers!

I received my Chameleon AVR dev-kits yesterday and immediately started going through the manual. On top of processor-specific data sheets, e-books, sample code and other documents there is a ~300page manual written specifically on the Chameleon design and operation. The Chameleon comes pre-loaded with a little test application/game. I decided to film it briefly in order to demo what the board is capable of. Here is the default game displayed on a TV via NTSC, audio is through the TV but the mic on my camcorder isn’t great so it’s a bit low and input to the game was via PS2 keyboard.

Continue reading

Chameleon Invasion

So I’ve been on quite the shopping rampage lately ordering some parts, several books and I just now ordered a few new dev. kits that I can’t wait to play with! As I was reading my new issue of Circuit Cellar I saw an article about a development board that contains an Atmel AVR 328P *AND* a Parallax Propeller. I’ve been wanting to play with the propeller for quite some time now, but just never got around to ordering one. The board is from Nurve Networks and it is called the Chameleon.

I should also note that it also comes with a PIC in place of the AVR, but the fact that the AVR comes pre-loaded with the Arduino bootloader and that there are already Arduino libraries for the platform looks really interesting! I have ordered two boards and I think I’m going to try an experiment to create the same project on both boards, one using the Arduino bootloader/IDE/libraries and one without to post a comparison of the time required to complete each.

Some of the board’s features include:

  • 2 Processors for a total of 9 processing cores
  • 1MB Flash, 64K EEPROM
  • NTSC/PAL video output as well as VGA interface
  • Audio out
  • PS2 port for interfacing with keyboard/mouse

Take into account that the entire package is currently going for less than $60 and it looks even more impressive. As always, I’ll post on any projects/experiences once I get them in 😀

Cheers!

DS Touch Screen Project

So my SparkFun order came in today. I received some IR LEDs, some IR ICs w/ EEPROM that can record IR signals from any remote, store them and then perform an action when they are detected again (by controlling digital output pins). I also got some Nintendo DS touchscreens and breakout boards for them and a few other little toys.

Continue reading

An Arduino Apology

I’ll admit it… I trash talked the Arduino platform. I’ll also admit that any comments I made were entirely unfounded. Like other people I know, I equated the Arduino platform’s simplicity with “restrictiveness” and “cheesyness.” I don’t know why, but I kind of viewed it as the “VB” of microcontroller programming (ie: good for n00bs, but really bad otherwise). I used to laugh at people who had their little toolboxes with their cute cut-to-length wires and kits.

Continue reading

I have purchased an ID-12 RFID reader as well as a MAX-7456 breakout board from the Toronto sparkfun distributor (Creatron) and have finally gotten around to starting a project with them. This is a quick hack I threw together to test the RFID and OSD modules together. Here is a quick video demo:

Continue reading